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The Way I Used to Be (Hardcover) by Amber Smith

The Way I Used to Be (Hardcover) by Amber Smith - image 1 of 1
The Way I Used to Be (Hardcover) by Amber Smith - image 1 of 1
$16.42 when purchased online

About this item


About the Book

"After fourteen-year-old Eden is raped by her brother's best friend, she knows she'll never be the way she used to be"--

Book Synopsis

A New York Times bestseller!

In the tradition of Speak, this extraordinary debut novel shares the unforgettable story of a young woman as she struggles to find strength in the aftermath of an assault.

Eden was always good at being good. Starting high school didn't change who she was. But the night her brother's best friend rapes her, Eden's world capsizes.

What was once simple, is now complex. What Eden once loved--who she once loved--she now hates. What she thought she knew to be true, is now lies. Nothing makes sense anymore, and she knows she's supposed to tell someone what happened but she can't. So she buries it instead. And she buries the way she used to be.

Told in four parts--freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior year--this provocative debut reveals the deep cuts of trauma. But it also demonstrates one young woman's strength as she navigates the disappointment and unbearable pains of adolescence, of first love and first heartbreak, of friendships broken and rebuilt, and while learning to embrace a power of survival she never knew she had hidden within her heart.

Review Quotes

STARRED REVIEW "This is a poignant book that realistically looks at the lasting effects of trauma on love, relationships, and life....Teens will be reminded of Laurie Halse Anderson's Speak. VERDICT An important addition for every collection."-- "School Library Journal"

The Way I Used to Be explores the aftermath of sexual assault with a precision and searing honesty that is often terrifying, sometimes eerily beautiful, and always completely true. It is The Hero's Journey through a distorted circus mirror--one girl's quest to turn desperation into courage, to become a survivor instead of a victim. Amber Smith gets it exactly right.--Amy Reed, author of BEAUTIFUL and CLEAN

The Way I Used To Be is an intensely gripping and raw look at secrets, silence, speaking out, and survival in the aftermath of a sexual assault. A must-have for every collection that serves teens.-- "SLJ / Teen Librarian Toolbox"

"The Way I Used to Be is a beautifully told debut novel spanning four years of a rape survivor's life"-- "The Bucks County Courier Times"

"A difficult, painful journey, but teens who have experienced rape and abuse will be grateful for this unvarnished and ultimately hopeful portrait. Eden's shell-shocked narrative is an excellent narrative conduit for what Smith has to say."--Booklist "February 1, 2016"

"A heart-twisting, but ultimately hopeful, exploration of how pain can lead to strength." -- "The Boston Globe"

"Bottom Line: powerful, emotional and raw."-- "BRANDI BREATHES BOOKS"

"Edy's exploration of the meaning of sexuality and intimacy will be thought provoking for teen readers of various experience levels, and this title is likely to find space alongside [Laurie Halse] Anderson's Speak. -- "BCCB"

Don't let a book of this magnitude pass you by. Pick it up and read it because Eden's story demands to be read.-- "Once Upon a Twilight"

Easily one of the hardest books to read on this list. Brutal, raw and emotional... Eden's story gets told on her terms, in her voice. An honest look at one teen's struggle to find her way back to herself, to mold herself into the survivor she is.-- "FANGIRLISH"

Readers will root for her as she gathers the courage, at last, to speak up.-- "B&N Teen blog"

This is far from a feel-good read, but I can't implore how necessary it is to read a book like this one . . . As unforgettable and stirring as Laurie Halse Anderson's Speak, Smith's provocative debut is best described as a survival story with hope and anger serving as prominent themes so fully explored they simmer off the page.-- "The Young Folks"

THE WAY I USED TO BE promises to be meaningful, significant, and truly unforgettable.-- "FIKTSHUN"

With an achingly beautiful narrative and carefully crafted plot, The Way I Used to Be is more than just an excellent book; it's an important one.-- "NOVEL NOVICE"
Dimensions (Overall): 8.3 Inches (H) x 5.7 Inches (W) x 1.4 Inches (D)
Weight: 1 Pounds
Suggested Age: 13-19 Years
Number of Pages: 384
Genre: Juvenile Fiction
Sub-Genre: Girls + Women, Social Issues / Physical + Emotional Abuse, Social Issues / Adolescence
Publisher: Margaret K McElderry.
Format: Hardcover
Author: Amber Smith
Language: English
Street Date: March 22, 2016
TCIN: 50313706
UPC: 9781481449359
Item Number (DPCI): 059-12-1070
Origin: Made in the USA
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Shipping details

Estimated ship dimensions: 5.5 inches length x 1 inches width x 8.3 inches height
Estimated ship weight: 1 pounds
We regret that this item cannot be shipped to PO Boxes.
This item cannot be shipped to the following locations: United States Minor Outlying Islands, American Samoa (see also separate entry under AS), Puerto Rico (see also separate entry under PR), Northern Mariana Islands, Virgin Islands, U.S., APO/FPO, Guam (see also separate entry under GU)

Return details

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4.5 out of 5 stars with 4 reviews
100% would recommend
3 recommendations

I loved it

5 out of 5 stars
Thumbs up graphic, would recommend
Halee - 2 years ago
A rollercoaster of emotions while you read. I was left, like another reviewer said, frustrated. But I understand. I recommend this book.
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The way I use to be

5 out of 5 stars
Thumbs up graphic, would recommend
Nesscia - 3 years ago, Verified purchaser
This book will make you feel things you didn’t know you could in a book. Very emotional and will leaving you gasping and even frustrated ,but not with regret.
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5 out of 5 stars
Thumbs up graphic, would recommend
cynthiakarol - 7 years ago
has a little bit of everything and its such a rollercoaster to read! would recommend this to anyone.
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